Problems plague cattle ship

Mechanical problems have again beset the Pearl of Para, prompting the live export vessel to halt its journey from Fremantle to Israel with 5467 cattle on board.

Exporter Alan Schmidt said the decision to halt the journey and anchor the Pearl of Para in Cockburn Sound was precautionary to allow a minor coolant leakage in the engine to be fixed.

"All livestock are in very good condition and are being closely monitored by an experienced veterinarian (and) two experienced stockmen," he said. "The vessel is loaded only to 85 per cent."

Mr Schmidt said he hoped the voyage would continue by today.

It is the second time in four months the Pearl of Para has been forced to halt its journey to Israel because of mechanical problems.

In September the ship, with 5240 cattle on board, was at anchor off Fremantle for more than a week while repairs were carried out. Three of the cattle died during the ensuing voyage to Israel, below the Federal Government's reportable level of one per cent.

The West Australian

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